Court bars NBC from imposing fines on broadcast stations

A federal high court in Abuja has barred the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) from imposing fines on broadcast stations in the country.

Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia gave the order on Wednesday while delivering judgment in a suit, saying that the regulatory body, not being a court of law, acted above its powers by imposing fines.

The Media Rights Agenda (MRA) had instituted the suit against the NBC which imposed fines on broadcast stations in 2022 for allegedly undermining national security by broadcasting documentaries on banditry in Nigeria.

The judge also voided the sections of the Nigeria broadcasting code which authorise the NBC to impose the fines, maintaining that administrative and regulatory bodies are not allowed to exercise judicial powers.

Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia also restrained the NBC and anyone acting on its behalf from further imposing any fine on any media or broadcast platform in the country for any alleged violation of the broadcasting code.